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Richard Chear (cheers)

Richard Chear, one of 25 convicts transported on the Guardian, July 1789

Name, Aliases & Gender

Name: Richard Chear (cheers)
Aliases: none
Gender: m

Birth, Occupation & Death

Date of Birth: -
Occupation: -
Date of Death: 21st February, 1827
Age: -

Life Span

Life span

Male median life span was 60 years*

* Median life span based on contributions

Conviction & Transportation

Sentence Severity

Sentence Severity

Sentenced to Life

Crime: Horse theft
Convicted at: Surrey Assizes
Sentence term: Life
Ship: Guardian
Departure date: July, 1789
Arrival date: 21st February, 1790
Place of arrival New South Wales
Passenger manifest Travelled with 24 other convicts


Primary source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 87, Class and Piece Number HO11/1, Page Number 24
Source description: This record is one of the entries in the British convict transportation registers 1787-1867 database compiled by State Library of Queensland from British Home Office (HO) records which are available on microfilm as part of the Australian Joint Copying Project.

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Community Contributions

Anonymous on 2nd May, 2012 wrote:

Was freed after saving multiple lives during an iceberg collision.

Jennifer Bolton on 10th December, 2012 wrote:

Richard was christened on 12 August 1759 in Abingdon, Berkshire, the sixth of eight children. He and his older brother John had clashed with authorities on a violent suspicion of having, on 22 October 1787, lead away from Hampstead Norris in Berkshire, to Walton-upon-Thames in Surrey, two horses, which apparently had been passed on to them to deliver to the market sale near London, as part of their normal duties.
Richard was a convict, tried at Surrey Assizes on 26 March 1788 and transported to New South
Wales for life and sent out with the second fleet on the ‘Guardian’ and then ‘Surprize’ with other
skilled convicts.  Being well trained in husbandry and the land, he qualified and was selected, as one of 25 special ‘transportees’ to accompany Lieut. Edward Riou, Commander of Guardian to relieve the serious agricultural famine which beset Governor Arthur Phillip, R.N., soon after the establishment of the New Colony. Richard was separated from his first wife, Mary Pratt and their daughter Ann from the time of his committal on 7 December 1787 to the date of the ‘Guardian’s’ departure from Spithead on 12 September 1789, a period of 21 months (Ann would have been almost 4 years).
On arrival in the colony (28 June, 1790) Richard was given his freedom (a Warrant of Emancipation) ‘for his fidelity to Captain Edward Riou R.N. in helping the few other physically capable and loyal members of the crew to pump and bail, in two-hourly relays, day and night, under extremely difficult weather conditions’ after the ship hit an iceberg. Richard and 13 other transportee-husbandmen’ were given
conditional pardons by Lieut. Riou. The Warrant of Emancipation was granted to Richard on condition they did not return to England
within the period of their respective sentences (life).
Richard was granted 30 acres at Kissing Point
(Ryde)known as Cheers Farm at Eastern Farms
and as further acknowledgement of his
character, was granted two town leases, where he established the first butchering business in the
New Colony, running his animals on the area bounded by George, Pitt, Hunter and Bridge Streets and watering them from the Tank Stream. His shop was situated on the corner of George and
Hunter Streets. His slaughterhouse was situated at the tip of Dawes Point, where the south pylon of the Sydney Harbour Bridge now stands. His other property was at the corner of George Street north and Middlesex Lane where in 1798 he opened the ‘Black Bull’ hotel.
Richard was granted 100 acres of land north of the harbour (Manly)and it was known as Cheers Farm.
Richard married Esther Weaver (aka Hester Vevars) on 2 March, 1795.Richard was living with Margaret Fogarty from 1801 with their children. It is unknown what happened to Esther, but his later partnership with Margaret Fogarty (marriage not registered) produced sons Richard (1802), John (1804) and daughter Harriet (1806).
Richard received one of the first liquor licences in the colony. Margaret died 23 August 1810 from drinking excessive alcohol. She is buried in the Old Sydney Burial Ground (under Town Hall Railway Station).
Richard married Jane Ann Smith 16 October 1815 at St Phillips, Sydney. They had 4 children (Elizabeth born 1816, Mary Ann born 1818, James born 1819 & William born 1821) Jane died 2 March 1823 & was buried in the Elizabeth St Burial Grounds (under Central Railway Station).
Richard died 21 February 1827 & was buried in Devonshire St Cemetery (under Central Railway Station)

Jennifer Bolton on 19th January, 2018 wrote:

Richard’s brotherm John Chear, was tried along with Richard on 26 March 1788.
John Chear was executed (hanged I presume) in Aprilm 1788 at Kennington Common ( at the age of 41 years)

Convict Changes History

Jennifer Bolton on 10th December, 2012 made the following changes:

surname Chear (cheers) (prev. Chear), date of death 21st February, 1827, gender

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